After blitzing SXSW and a phenomenal tour earlier this year including appearances at Coachella and Austin Pysch Fest, Bo Ningen are returning to the USA this fall. They’ll be supporting Kasabian on a run of dates alongside playing Voodoo Experience in New Orleans.
Bo Ningen ‘III’ is a rich and accomplished album that has seen Bo Ningen evolve musically. Jehnny Beth of Savages also guests on the album and they’ve sung partly in English on this album for the first time. It was recorded over several months with the band able to spend more time on the production and development of the songs then ever before. ‘III’ illustrates Bo Ningen as a group with a singular vision, reaching for what they define as “pure music”, by turns esoteric and a no holds barred sensory assault.
Bo Ningen arrived when Taigen and Kohhei’s bands played on the same bill. Bad news for their previous band-mates but each had found a kindred spirit, someone else who wanted to leave ‘rock’ behind and commit to something much weirder. Mon Chan and Yuki joined in a similar fashion, hearing the beyond-fucked-up noises of this new two-piece. The fundamentals were laid and the four expatriate cosmonauts were set to channel the “pure music” they had in mind.
After many continual twelve hour jams had blurred the distinction between their limbs and their instruments, they played the first “true” Bo Ningen show. The story of the next two years followed a fairytale pattern of adversity with the eventual catharsis of now being regarded by many as London’s best live band,
By this point Bo Ningen had struck up with Stolen Recordings releasing their first EP on 10” vinyl quickly followed by their debut album ‘Bo Ningen’.
Snowballing interest saw them taken up as something like international art pin-ups, collaborating with Tim Noble & Sue Webster, The Frieze Art Fair, Copenhagen Film Festival, the Venice Biennale, the Yohji Yamamoto V& A exhibition and the Branchage Film Festival. They also performed at Yoko Ono’s 2013 Meltdown Festival. Meanwhile, their prodigal son-style homecoming to Japan were surreal day dreams in which they appeared alongside personal heroes Damo Suzuki, Keiji Haino, Merzbow, and Guitar Wolf. They have also played with Black Sabbath, The Horrors, Faust, The Cult, SCUM, TOY and British Sea Power and the festivals: Glastonbury, Latitude, Lowlands, Bestival, Austin Psych Fest, Nuits Sonares , 1234, Fuji Rock and Big Day Out 2014.
Though they come from Gunmma, Tajimi, Nishinomiya, and Tokyo, they coalesced in London. Musically, they channel their country’s legacy of obscure, brain-warping heavy-psych: all traceable beneath their esoteric sound. It’s evident however that they were in the mood for discovery: fusing their tastes in Acid Folk and Noise and hurling them into the electric cataclysm along with a weighty dose of Sabbath and Nirvana.
Bo Ningen’s third album “III” was released by Stolen Recordings earlier this year.